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Denverpost.com: ‘Individuated News’ system to be tested at LA Daily News

March 6th, 2009 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Online Journalism

MediaNews Group is to test its Individuated News or I-News system at the Los Angeles Daily News this summer.

The system will allow users to tailor news content to their tastes and feed articles into a printer-ready/mobile edition for customers.

Full story at this link…

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paidContent.org: US MediaNews Group CEO says think about outsourcing ‘almost across the board’

October 22nd, 2008 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Newspapers

The CEO of MediaNews Group, Dean Singleton, told the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association this week that his company is exploring outsourcing options, including the possibility of a single news desk for the company that could be offshore.

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Top US news sites for February

March 20th, 2008 | No Comments | Posted by in Journalism, Online Journalism, Traffic

Top 50 US news sites for February 2008, according to Nielsen Online.

(Also, have a look at: February Worries Boost News Traffic)

Brand Uniques  (000) Time Per Person (hh:mm:ss)
All Events & Global News 101,336 127:01

CNN Digital Network 37,181 0:40:11
Yahoo! News 35,274 0:23:10
MSNBC Digital Network 34,013 0:29:50
AOL News 21,119 0:36:14
NYTimes.com 18,975 0:33:29
Tribune Newspapers 14,716 0:10:09
Gannett Newspapers 13,998 0:21:28
ABCNEWS Digital Network 12,324 0:09:54
Google News 12,050 0:10:14
WorldNow 10,588 0:13:16
USATODAY.com 10,571 0:14:16
Washingtonpost.com 10,441 0:17:30
Fox News Digital Network 10,177 0:41:10
CBS News Digital Network 9,970 0:09:09
Hearst Newspapers Digital 8,349 0:17:38
McClatchy Network 8,343 0:11:41
IB Websites 7,565 0:11:00
Advance Internet 6,791 0:13:08
BBC News 6,437 0:10:42
Slate 6,261 0:07:29
Gannett Broadcasting 6,174 0:09:18
Topix 6,121 0:06:30
MediaNews Group 5,850 0:12:41
Associated Press 5,353 0:07:03
Cox Newspapers 5,197 0:20:08
Boston.com 4,904 0:07:47
Belo Television 4,827 0:05:58
Fox Television Stations 4,758 0:06:06
New York Post Holdings 4,605 0:09:12
NewsMax.com 4,054 0:10:35
TheHuffingtonPost.com 3,749 0:08:04
Freedom Interactive 3,613 0:07:51
Daily News Online Edition 3,563 0:06:46
Belo Newspapers 3,476 0:05:52
Drudgereport.com 3,445 0:59:49
Guardian.co.uk 3,391 0:02:49
Daily Mail 3,364 0:09:11
Telegraph 2,990 0:03:39
Times Online 2,852 0:06:37
Community News Network 2,846 0:10:40
Swift Newspapers 2,750 0:05:42
Scripps News Group 2,713 0:18:00
Netscape 2,709 0:11:03
Breitbart.com 2,674 0:09:20
Int Herald Tribune 2,598 0:02:02
Fisher Interactive Network 2,526 0:05:08
Seattle Times Network 2,245 0:11:03
Philly.com 2,204 0:04:52
Chicago Sun-Times 2,203 0:08:29
Star Tribune 2,108 0:25:08

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Citizen experts not citizen journalists?

November 29th, 2007 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Citizen journalism

Yesterday’s news that Topix will now handle the forums and article commenting system for MediaNews Group raises some questions for the future of user-generated content on news sites.

Does the future of so-called citizen journalism and user-generated content on news sites lie in opinion/comment rather than reporting?

MediaNews’ decision seems to suggest so, investing in areas of their sites where users react or debate content rather than submitting their own.

Writing for the Future of News blog, Steve Boriss takes this one step further saying: ‘Citizen journalism is dead. Expert journalism is the future‘. To summarise, Boriss argues that citizens (and to some extent professinal journalists) should not be reporters or newsgatherers for online but act as ‘topic experts':

The model that will work — that will make news better, not worse — is one that combines the talents of topic experts throughout the web with those who have a knack for aggregating and editing their material to satisfy an audience.

Quality content, whether it’s from citizens or journalists, properly targeted by editors with the ability to ‘energize their audience’. To be avoided: allowing a free-for-all in terms of the quality of user-generated content in a bid to show users that their contributions are desired.

Allowing citizen journalists and users to submit news reports can be invaluable – the first pictures of a fire, a natural disaster, riots in Paris. But, as Steve Outing suggests in his article analysing the failure of his own grassroots citizen journalism project, the way in which news sites publish this content needs changing.

Too often, says Outing, these images and films are segregated in a separate area of the site away from professional coverage of the event. A better idea, says Outing, is to use editors to select the best submissions and mix these with the professional coverage – again supporting Boriss’ model of experts and expert editors.

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Outsourcing newspaper interaction – on Topix

November 28th, 2007 | 10 Comments | Posted by in Citizen journalism, Online Journalism

Topix has just struck a deal to run the forums of MediaNews Group in the US, which owns 61 newspapers including the Denver Post and San Jose Mercury News.

If Topix’s claim is genuine (and I have no reason to doubt it) that it gets over 80,000 comments a day – three million people posting more than 18 million comments since it launched its forums little under two years ago – then there seems to be obvious and compelling reasons for the union.

Marry what Topix does best with the local audience/trust that MediaNews papers have and you’re on to a winner surely?

Topix boasts again: IndyStar.com and Sun-Sentinel.com have each surpassed one million forum posts since Topix started running them.

In interview yesterday with Journalism.co.uk Yoosk consulting editor Nick Ryan said that traditional media was failing to shift from the old top-down approach online because it’s not getting involved nearly enough in user-interaction.

So all good with this move? Not all, according to Howard Owens:

“Media News signing a deal to turn over commenting functions to Topix is just dumb beyond belief

“Ironically, Media News owns the Denver Post, which of late has been doing a fantastic job of trying to become the hub of community conversation, both through its main news site and its innovative neighbours site.

“Those efforts are completely incompatible, as I see it, with the Topix business model, which Chris Tolles is quite blunt about: “We’re aiming to be the number one local news site on the web …”

“There can be only one number one, and if it’s Topix, it ain’t your newspaper.com.”

Owens adds that local should be a vertical, in the way fashion and travel are, and that the local paper should ‘own’ that space, dominating it across all platforms in a way other major brands dominate verticals, rather than letting another company get the best out of the paper’s good relationship with its audience.

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